When I think back to my first year of teaching, I can remember so many of the details. The panic. The sheer terror. What if I don’t know every detail of the Civil War? What if I can’t show these fractions in the right way? What if I can’t find my lesson plan book? What if I show up the first day and have forgotten I’m still in my pajamas? What if a kid asks me a question that I can’t answer? But, my biggest fear?
What if I let my kids down and am not the teacher they need?
A fear that I think I still have today. It’s no longer like a ‘scary growling monster fear,’ it was that first year. But it’s a quiet, internal fear that continues to push. Kind of like a push when your sled needs a nudge to get started in the snow. A fear that keeps me reflecting. Trying harder. Working on better. A fear that pushes me to grow and never, ever stop learning.
Somewhere, along the way, I realized I don’t have to know it all. I’m not the expert in the room. Then I realized how powerful it is to let kids know that I am still learning, too. To show them that I learn with them. From them. Alongside them. Knowing everything is overrated. Learning? It’s for life.